9-year-old battling cancer lives dream to become police officer
ITHICA, N.Y. (WSTM) - Most 9-year-olds are doing their homework right now, but for one little boy in Ithaca, he's coming home from his first day on the job as an honorary police officer.
Colin Toland is battling a brain tumor and doctors say all the tests show he shouldn't even be conscious, but instead he's living his dream.
"My favorite part about it is the badge," Colin said.
He was sworn in as an honorary member of the Ithaca Police Department in front of his family, dozens of officers, and even his third grade class.
Colin's mother Tamiko Toland says it's something she'll never forget.
"It meant so much to us, and I was genuinely the proud mother of a police officer this morning," she said.
It's just the latest accomplishment for Colin who has gone through six brain surgeries - three of those in the last twenty months.
His dad Ian Hayward says even during the hardest times, nothing can keep Colin down.
"Colin doesn't look at obstacles the way I've seen most people. He sees everyday as an opportunity to have fun. When he's having a tough time he usually bounces back with a laugh or a joke," said Hayward.
His positive attitude is just one reason Chief John Barber says it's an honor to have him on the force.
"It's inspiring and he's touched the heart of every officer here," the Chief said.
It's quite the feat for a rookie officer, but no surprise to his family.
"I know he's the bravest kid I've ever met, and I know he'll take this job seriously," Colin's Dad said.
"I just like helping people," said Colin.
"His time is limited. I just don't want him to be forgotten," his dad said.
After today - that would be pretty hard to do.